Analysis Of "Confessions Of A Woman Who Burnt Down A Town"

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“Confessions of a woman who burnt down a town” is a poem which tells the story of a Black slave who is guilty for burning down much of her town. It gives us a glimpse of just how bad slaves were treated in the 1700s. This poem made me realize how freedom comes in different forms for different individuals, and in Marie’s case it was through death. The lines “I at peace, peace, perfect peace”, describes how bad she was treated to be at peace when she knows she will surely die. I think this poem was written to give a little back story of Marie’s situation and what might have gone through her head that convinced her to do what she did. I really liked the way the poet took events from Marie’s life and wrote about her thoughts and feeling. This way the situation seems less bias, and we get to learn about the tragedy that eventually led her to burn down half of Montreal. This shows that the poet is really passionate and her feelings are seeping through each line.

One of the pictures this poem created in my mind is a person standing up for her rights and sacrificing a lot for her freedom; Likewise, I think the poet is trying to teach us to fight for what we believe is right just like Marie did. Midway throughout the poem the poet started using informal language. By doing so, I believe the poet was trying to show us a change in Marie’s personality. Although it was really confusing to understand, it really set the mood and made me feel as if I was at the time of this poem. I disliked how the lines lack of punctuality as it made the verse very hard to read and understand. This situation reminded me of the time of segregation when black people were pushed to the corner to commit crimes in order to receive freedom. The character is very different from me because I won’t do something as big as lighting my town on fire for the sake of my freedom. I believe revenge is not the answer to our problems. If this happened to me I would probably run away or do as I’m told instead of seeking out for revenge.

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